FULL MINUTES OF OCTOBER 6, 2009
regular meeting of the 2009-2010
Agenda Item I. Call to Order
Marianna Walker, Chair of the Faculty called the meeting to order at 2:10 p.m.
Agenda Item II. Approval of Minutes
Professor Estep (Academic Library Services) offered a revision to Dean Boyer’s remarks about the library budget. The minutes of September 15, 2009, were then approved as amended.
Agenda Item III. Special Order of the Day
A. Roll Call
Senators absent were: Professors Jenks (History), Schenarts (Medicine), Jenkins (Social Work), Van Willigen (Sociology), Coddington (Technology and Computer Sciences) and Niswander (Academic Deans’ Representative).
Alternates present were: Professors Aarps for Mathews (Anthropology), Lamb for Reyes (Biology), Schmidt for Jeffs (Education), Henze for Deena (English), Boklage for Willson (Medicine), Rentschler for Peery (Nursing), and Kenney for Shinpaugh (Physics).
The Chancellor has
approved the following resolution from the January 27, 2009,
09-06 Revisions to the ECU Faculty Manual, Appendix A. Faculty Constitution, Section VII.
Method of Election of the
We have openings on
the following University Committees and ask anyone interested in serving on
these committees to please contact Marianna Walker, Chair of the Faculty, at email@example.com.
descriptions are available online at:
o Biological Safety Committee, 1 year term as Chair of the Faculty representative
Calendar Committee, 1 year term as
o Continuing and Career Education Committee, 1 year as Chair of the Faculty representative
Faculty Information Technology Review Committee, 1
year term as
o Family Weekend Committee, 1 year term as Chair of the Faculty representative
o Infection Control Committee, 1 year term as Chair of the Faculty representative
o Radiation Safety (Basic Science) Committee, 1 year term as Chair of the Faculty rep.
o Resident Status Appeals Committee, 1 year term as Chair of the Faculty representative
o Student Scholarships, Fellowships, and Financial Aid Committee, 1 year full committee term
o Teaching Grants Committee, 1 year term as Chair of the Faculty representative
University Curriculum Committee, 1 year term as
Faculty are reminded that most of the speeches given by the Chair of the Faculty are posted online at: http://www.ecu.edu/cs-acad/fsonline/speeches/Speeches.cfm.
The Committee on
Committees is seeking nominees from the faculty for the election of one delegate and two alternates to the 2010-2011
UNC Faculty Assembly. Nominees should be full-time faculty,
holding no administrative duties outside his/her department. The
names of those nominated to the Committee on Committees will be submitted to
C. Steve Ballard, Chancellor
Chancellor Ballard began his remarks by discussing the policy manual which will be a repository of policies, procedures, rules, and guidelines by which ECU operates. Board of Trustees felt that the way that the University was doing business was too hazardous, chaotic , not systematic, haphazard and frequently in violation of various types of requirements. This put the University under unnecessary risk as an institution. Risk management has become one of the leading concerns of many Universities. Therefore, it was determined that the best practices of the University needed improvement, and ECU has been working for the last twenty three months trying to get the appropriate procedures in place. The Chancellor said that he felt very good about the progress to date. The committee that has been working on these changes has worked hard in trying to establish the appropriate procedures. Recently several revisions were included in the approach to the University Policy Manual which included:
Section 3.1 adds important language about effective faculty participation
Section 3.3 mentions five specific areas where the faculty have a particularly important part to play in the procedures of the University. These include topics such as curriculum, tenure and promotion, and other areas where faculty input is vital.
Section 3.5 added important language about procedures for adopting change that reinforces the concept of shared governance.
The Chancellor stated that he supported all these revisions and both the Faculty Manual Steering Committee and the Executive Council had approved of these revisions as well. All of these efforts should make the Board of Trustees and the auditor feel more confident in the way that the University is operating.
The next topic that the Chancellor discussed was retention and graduation, Three years ago the UNC General Administration set retention and graduation goals identified for each institution. Goals were set related for first year retention and for 4 and 6 year graduation rates. Last month the UNC Board of Governors tied to enrollment growth funding. This and other forms of revenue, for , which ECU would otherwise been eligible automatically ,may be reduced. Using student retention rates as an indicator does not take into account the profile of the students accepted at ECU. This University’s students are more at risk of not continuing from their Freshman year to their Sophomore year and not graduating on time. Last year, the first year retention rate was78.7% this year and the goal for this University was 79%. The Chancellor reported that he will find out this week if this outcome was close enough to ensure the normal funding commitments like enrollment growth funding. Because of this question about funding and because of the Strategic Plan and the commitment of this University to the success of its students a University wide University Retention and Graduation Task Force will been formed to discuss the topic of retention in detail. This task force will examine admittance criteria because this can make a terrific difference in the percentages of students who come back as Sophomores and who eventually graduate on time. Another variable is what happens in the classroom and whether the student feels that they are a part of an academic unit. The student’s ability to declare a major and to get sufficient tutoring and mentoring to succeed in their area of interest is a big issue in retention. Another variable is where the students live. The task force will be examining all these issue and focusing on the areas where the University has a big sphere of influence and can control the outcome.
Another major University focus relating to retention and
graduation is an
The Chancellor also mentioned that COAD 1000 was improving first year retention rates. Efforts will be made to expanding participation in this program since only a third of the freshman class take this course.
The final topic that the Chancellor reported on was the
Bioscience building replacing the Howell building. This is the single most
important construction priority on the East Campus. The cost would be about
$125 million. The Chancellor indicated that he would appreciate
The Chancellor concluded his remarks by saying that for the first time in a year he had no budget update. There has been no change in the budget figures for a month and for the first time in fifteen months. The budget information presented in the recent Budget Forum was the best information available at this time The Chancellor indicated his appreciation to Professor Gavin, as chair of this task force in providing structure to this discussion, and said that he welcomed questions.
Professor Glascoff (Health and Human Performance) mentioned an article in the Daily Reflector stating that on campus housing was the best predictor of freshman retention. She asked about mandatory on campus housing for freshman and how that had worked at other institutions as the predictor for better retention. She asked if there was a serious consideration for creating more on campus freshman housing. Chancellor responded by saying that ECU needs the beds required for this to happen and that there were currently not enough beds available due to dormitory space being renovated. He stated that he understood the difference between retention based on campus housing and that off campus housing has a tremendous negative impact on grades and retention rates. He also indicated that the housing master plan took this into consideration and that he had asked for approval from the Board of Trustees for more on campus housing.
Zoller (Art and Design) stated that ECU had come so close to the retention goal
and wondered how the other institutions within the University system had
done. Chancellor Ballard said that
comparison data between institutions, but that he would ask Austin Bunch to
forward that information to the
Professor Rigsby (Geology) first thanked the Chancellor for his remarks on the policy on policies particularly related to his support for the revisions to Sections 3.1, 3.3 and 3.5 ; Professor Rigsby stated that that was a big step forward and asked when the faculty as a whole would get to see the policy on policies that was approved yesterday by the executive council. Chancellor Ballard responded as soon as possible after the meeting. Link to new PRR Regulation
Professor Rigsby (Geology) stated, that within the Policy on
Policies document, it is clear that the
Professor Boklage (Medicine) stated that in reference to the retention and enrollment growth funding, it seems that the University gets punished if they make a mistake in admitting a student that, after given a chance and can not make it, we all get punished if the same student flunks out of school. Chancellor Ballard agreed with his point that the University can not lose the integrity required to deal with each student. He also stated that there was a real danger when relying on only one indicator. Currently, there are 29 indicators that General Administration looks at and that ECU does not want to lose academic integrity by relying too much on one academic indicator.
Walker thanked Chancellor Ballard for his remarks and stated that the faculty
appreciated his efforts to preserve traditional faculty responsibilities and for
listening to and collaborating with the faculty leadership relative to
university policies and procedures,
specifically the Policy on Policies. She thanked him for advocating for the
faculty within the shared governance structure at
D. Deirdre Mageean, Vice Chancellor for Research and Graduate Studies
Prior to Vice Chancellor Mageean’s remarks Chair Walker noted that VC Mageean had worked diligently to preserve money for faculty in start-up funds and research development awards, despite the significant cuts in this division during the last academic year. VC Mageean was able to provide over $1 million for 51 requests for start-up funds in the 08/09 year. In addition,
million will be awarded to a group of 87 faculty for start-up funds for this
year, (which represents 3 different yearly cohorts). Chair
Vice Chancellor Mageean stated there was not enough funding to print the third annual report for everyone but that the report was posted on the University website. Link to Annual Report of the Division of Research and Graduate Studies
She invited everyone to read the details of the report and
indicated that she would provide some highlights of what had been a tough year
due to the financial environment. She reported that some parts of her division
took a 20% cut during the past year. This was done in part to protect the
academic core and also because of a very strange set of circumstances at the
state level. VC Mageean stated that for some strange reason the legislature
ordered a cut of over $1million in funding for centers which means that ECU
lost funding for RENCI and for the Center for Security Studies.
The faculty are to be congratulated on their ability to hold
steady on the amount of research funding from the previous year of around $44
million. Approximately$4.3 million has
been approved in seed money and other start up funds for the next year. She
reported that payoffs are being seen in all the investments. Federal stimulus
money is being aggressively pursued since losses in funding are clearly being
seen at the state level. ECU is currently tracking $12 million NIHS funding
this year where we were only tracking $6 million last year. The
VC Mageean reported that the University is in a critical
point in terms of space. Funding is needed to finishing the top floor of
Science and Technology and
VC Mageean discussed the continued need for centers and
institutes. She reported that they assist in education of our students and
outreach to the community as well as research. She asked that the
Ten faculty members from
No questions were posed to Vice Chancellor Mageean at this time.
E. Marianna Walker, Chair of the Faculty
Professor Walker began by stating that in thinking about her
remarks for the October
that as the Senators were aware, the review and revision of the faculty manual
was underway, which began the implementation phase of this directive. The
Standing University Academic Committees have begun the review of specific
sections of the faculty manual as charged, with the first sections being
reviewed at this
Manual Steering Committee initially met last week on September 30. The charges
from the Chancellor, Chair of the Faculty and the Provost were reviewed, which
have been distributed to all the senators. Faculty leaders were selected for
the Faculty Advisory Group based on their expertise in understanding the
faculty manual, or for their extended or present service as a Chair on a
University Academic Committee. This
faculty group will assist the standing university academic committees in all
aspects, by sharing their expertise and providing guidance and resources needed
to complete the charge. She called
attention to the list of the membership of the Faculty Advisory Committee’s
charge provided at each of the Senator’s seats.
A matrix was distributed to all standing University Academic and
Appellate Committees in the organizational meetings, which provided an outline
and timeline for manual review. Based on this review and revisions, the
committee will provide recommendations to the
The Steering Committee, Faculty Advisory Group, and the University Standing Committees will be asked to look at other UNC faculty manuals in consideration of best practices regarding language and form.
We must return to the basics by thinking about word choices, agree on syntactical form to represent or revise policy or procedures, and organize in a written framework that is easily interpretable by all. This manual must result in a document that increases understanding of the faculty policies and procedures and must be clear in how it relates to university policy and procedures. If the document is written in an understandable way, there will be fewer problems in the interpretation and process in the future.
Chair Walker attended her first UNC Faculty Assembly meeting as Chair of the
Faculty. She noted that Professor Catherine Rigsby would present highlights of
this meeting later in the meeting. She had a lunch meeting with other Chairs of
the Faculty of the UNC system and participated in a committee meeting relating
to Faculty Governance and Faculty Development.
She left the faculty assembly feeling great about ECU’s system of shared
governance and about the history that has fostered this working relationship
over the past 44 years. During these
meetings, she found myself giving examples of how the faculty leadership
mentors from within the Senate, of how the Chair of the Faculty communicates
openly with the Chancellor, of the quality of our standing University
committees and how they work with the
that she believed
Jones (Allied Health Sciences) stated that she has reviewed the Review
of the ECU Faculty Manual matrix
and wondered if decisions relating to the sections noted “remove” were already
made or would the
F. Anthony Britt, Director of Admissions
Mr. Britt stated that the Freshman class was born in1991. There were 19,200 applicants as full time first year freshmen this year and this is a 23% increase over the previous year. It is expected that this number will increase in the future. ECU admitted over 11,000 applicants this year which is on par with the previous year. The University Goal was to enroll 500 fewer students. The incoming freshmen was 3,963 this year vs. 4,500 last fall based on the September 8th census date. As a profile of the incoming Freshman class Mr. Britt stated: 18.8 % are from out of state. We are under a mandate to reduce this number to 18%. 42% were male and were 58% female. 12 students home schooled.
Professor Tovey (English) asked if admissions was planning
on using the same admissions standards as in the past and would Mr. Britt please
remind the Senators of what they were under a mandate to keep the number of out
of state students capped at 18% and not to increase the size of the Freshman
class. Mr. Britt noted that the
admission standards were tightening a bit and a tier model was being used for
out-of-state and in-state applicants next year. The goal will remain at 4,122
freshmen in 2010 with a minimum SAT threshold of
Professor Zoller (Art and Design) understood that the University was trying to increase international faculty and students and work to have ECU become more international. She wondered if ECU was actively pursuing international students. Mr. Britt noted that he did not know and that the question should be referred to the Office of International Affairs because he does not oversee that aspect of admissions. He also stated that increases in students from other nations would be counted within the 18% out of state cap.
Profess Zeager (Economics) stated that the SAT scores of the Freshman class were up this year and asked if Mr. Britt would provide the Senators with that information. Mr. Britt responded that ECU had an improved SAT of 25 points from 1026 (for Fall 2008 ) to 1051( in Fall 2009).
Professor Glascoff (Health and Human Performance) stated, that although his office didn’t work with international admissions, wasn’t it right that the more international students ECU has, the higher the out-of-state numbers go up. Mr. Britt responded yes but only 1% or 2 % of out-of-state students count for international students.
McKinnon (Interior Design and Merchandising) asked if ECU was seeing more
students who may have attended a private school but who are attending a State
supported university due to the downturn in the economy. Mr. Britt responded that all
G. David Dosser, Chair of the University Athletics Committee’s Academic Integrity Subcommittee
Professor Dosser provided several reports for the Faculty Senators and links have been provided here:
Professor David Dosser - - reported that this was his seventh report and that his salary was not paid for by Athletics but through Academic Affairs. He went over the academic integrity report that was before each Senator at their seat. Professor Dosser began his remarks by asking that the faculty take a more active role in influencing what goes on in athletics in insuring institutional control and academic integrity. He stated that academics and athletics needed to be fully integrated. Most of the problems are in terms of retention and not in academic performance. Professor Dosser went over the details of the report; it is important to note that this report concentrated on the Olympic sports and does not include football and basketball statistics. He reported that many of the comments made by the Chancellor in today’s Senate meeting applied to athletics. Overall ECU did not do as well this year as last year with a 2.9 overall average ; ECU was previously 5 out of 12 in the conference last year and 7 out of 12 academic ranking this year .Thus, while the GPA went up slightly ECU’s ranking in the conference went down.
Professor Dosser reported three concerns:
1) We need to continue to do a better job to screen the Chancellor’s special talent wavers. New policies have been implemented this year; however, more faculty input is needed and more data is needed as well. Admission decisions need to be on how likely a student athlete will be in graduating from ECU and not on how good an athlete they might be.
ECU should not accept athletes who do not want to be students no matter how good at their sport which he stated was his opinion.
2) Best predictor of academic success and graduation is whether the student identifies primarily as an athlete or as student. This fact is the conclusion of research from the NCAA. Professor Dosser suggested that ECU do a better job in getting faculty members connected to the athletes as soon as possible. He suggested the University consider a faculty mentoring program. Athletes spend a great deal of time with their coaches and the athletic support staff but the emphasis should be on the development of the whole person is important.
3) There is no evidence of systemic academic integrity problems. Students athletes should be treated like any other student. No one monitors what individual faculty members do. All of us are responsible for the academic integrity of the student athletes here at ECU.
ECU struggles with the same issues as other Division 1 schools and does better in most respects than most other Universities in Professor Dosser’s opinion.
Professor Kenney (Physics) Thanked Professor Dosser for the quantitative report and asked if there were any grade inflation since the cumulative GPA average shown for athletes is higher than the general GPA for the University. Professor Kenny suggested that data should be distributed that showed how do other Universities GPA averages compare between these two groups Professor Dosser said he would explore this and provide the information to the Senators.
Professor Roberts (Philosophy) asked, in reference to the information stating that 47% of the student athletes have earned “ECU Academic Honors”, what did this mean. Professor Dosser responded that the Academic Honors included the Chancellor’s list, Dean’s list, etc. with all of them combined and referenced in the report. He stated that almost half of the athletes made 3.0 average or higher.
Professor Vail-Smith (Health and Human Performance) asked about the number of special talent waivers for student athletes. Professor Dosser did not have that information readily available but promised to forward that information to the Faculty Officers for distribution.
Professor Wacker (Music) asked about the statistics and was there a reason why the football and basketball student athletes were not included on the list. Professor Dosser stated that generally speaking the women student athletes do much better and the student athletes involved Olympic sports do better academically than athletes in revenue generating sports.
Professor Gabbard (Education) stated that he had spoken to several student athletes and was told that in order to increase the GPA student athletes were being pushed into academic fields that the athletic leaders thought would work easy for them instead of ones they liked. Professor Dosser responded that he appreciated Professor Gabbard’s remarks and that it was very difficult with the progress toward degree requirements for student athletes to change their majors without the threat of losing athletic eligibility. He noted that was why more faculty mentors were needed to help the students make better selections.
Professor Rigsby (Geology) asked if ECU was going to be held accountable for graduation retention rates, but the GPA rates of the student athletes involved in the revenue-generating sports were not as good, how would the academic performance rates of those athlete affect the overall university records? Professor Dosser stated that the academic performance of the football and basketball teams were slowly and steadily rising thanks to continued emphasis on academics and noted that ECU’s graduation rates for student athletes were comparable to other institutions.
Professor Tovey (English) asked if the academic performance rate that athletics goes through a situation that is specific only to athletics. Professor Dosser responded yes, even with men’s basketball, the rate has been more to do with transfer students than academic difficulties.
Each athlete has a retention point and an eligibility point and some of the football players win academic awards.
Rigsby (Geology) stated that she appreciated all of the data collection and
Professor Dosser’s devotion to the academic issues among student athletes. She asked if, in the future, data could be
provided that would allow the
G. Terry Holland, Director of Athletics
Director Holland first complimented Professor David Dosser on his dedication to academic mattes and his oversight of athletes in relation to academics. He stated that Professor Dossier does not accept free trips and is not seen as part of the Athletic Department. He keeps the Athletic Department at arms length and fulfills his oversight role. Several years ago Professor Dosser changed the coaches to put as much emphasis on winning the grade point championship as on winning the athletic championships. We now reward each of our coaches who win a GPA championship a month’s salary bonus. Mixed messages are sent to the student athletes, when games are scheduled that take them out of class, out of exams and even when championship games are scheduled during graduation exercises.
Mr. Holland reported a great deal of improvement in progress towards graduation that of the 21 Seniors on football team 7 have graduated and are now graduate students and 9 will graduate in December. Thus it is certain that 16 out of 21 Seniors on the football team will graduate within the four year period. There are some bright spots, but Mr. Holland asked for the faculty’s help in eliminating mixed messages to the student athletes. Some of the best students transfer to better sports programs; retention is an issue because the program can be penalized scholarships. If the retention rate drops below a. 60% rate can it cost scholarship money. ECU needs to keep doing what is right rather than what external dynamics make us feel we must do to protect the University. Mr. Holland invited the Faculty Senators to communicate at any time with the Athletics Department.
Mr. Holland ended his comments by addressing the question of why add 7,000 seats to football stadium in these lean economic times. He reported that construction costs are down 20% and that there will be a short term job stimulus in this region and an economic stimulus when an additional 7,000 fans come to a game and stay in a hotel or eat in a local restaurant. Mr. Holland reported that the Athletics Department projects that it has the ability to pay off the cost of construction and offer continued discount on season tickets for Pirate Club members who are suffering economically at this time; 35% of current ticket sales are sold at a discount. He also reported that construction would soon begin to build a new Olympic sports complex renovate the tennis courts to make them more competitive. He reported that the construction superintendent’s trailer and construction fence up for Olympic sports is already in place. These facilities will greatly improve the quality of women’s sports at ECU.
Professor Jones (Allied Health Sciences) stated that student athletes were doing well in classes due to the hard work of faculty within departments and schools and that it bothered her to hear that athletic coaches got a month’s salary in bonus when the student athletes exceeded the GPA standards. Mr. Holland stated that he understood her feelings.
Professor Sharer (English) asked if the scholarship formulas were designated just by eligibility standards or remaining eligible and staying in school. Mr. Holland responded that student athletes had to meet both eligibility standards and University standards in order to remain in school. Mr. Holland underscored what Professor Dosser had mentioned earlier about how complicate this all becomes when student athletes want to change their major.
Professor Gabbard (Education) stated that the College of Education has faculty spread all over campus with some classrooms in poor shape and asked if the College could borrow money from Athletics or would Mr. Holland provide advice on how to earn money to improve the academic buildings and classrooms. Mr. Holland responded that he was sorry he could not provide advice on this matter but that having the State fund academic buildings and classrooms was a better situation than fund-raising for buildings and improvements.
I. Robert J.
Morphet, Counselor, University Counseling Center and Mark Jones, Professor,
Department of Criminal Justice
Mr. Morphet stated that he headed the ECU’s Alcohol, Tobacco, and Other Drug (ATOD) task force which included members from the ECU Dean of Students, Student Health Services, ECU Police, Center for Counseling and Student Development, Office of Student Rights & Responsibilities, Students Recreation & Wellness, Student Legal Services, Campus Living, Greek Life, ECU Athletics, The First Year Center, Students Government Association, and faculty of criminal justice, health education, and rehabilitation studies. ATOD also engages in interactive presentations to academic classes and residence halls; special trainings for resident assistants, orientation assistants, student athletes, fraternities and sororities; seasonal programs around Halloween and spring break; risk management programs; and intervention and counseling programs. Mr. Morphet provided an update on the activities of the Alcohol, Tobacco, and Other Drugs (ATOD) Task Force including a Link to power point presentation on recent College ALC Prevention Strategies Final Report.
Mr. Morphet stated that freshmen students were most at risk and that ALC activities provided students with alcohol education. Cost is $5.00 per student and the total cost was $23,000. Over 78% had already responded to the alcohol safety academic success and retention survey funded by the Divisions of Academic and Student Affairs and the State’s Alcohol, Bureau, and Fire Arms Division. He stated that Fall 2008 was the first year that freshmen students became a part of the project.
Professor Jones (Criminal Justice) stated that faculty involvement really makes a difference for students and that the Task Force had received inquiries from parents about what the University was doing about alcohol and drug abuse within the community. Professor Jones reminded faculty that telling “war stories” about alcohol induced activities should be discouraged and that graduate teaching assistants should be reminded that glamorizing the use of alcohol and/or drug use sent the wrong message.
Professor Jones (Criminal Justice) noted that Bob Morphet and the ATOD were to be commended for their efforts on this important topic and that the program was recognized in September 2009 as the “2009 Outstanding Program” by the Eastern North Carolina Council on Substance Abuse. He noted that Chancellor Ballard had visited the task force meetings, and was serious about prevention and intervention on campus. With the Chancellor’s support, the ATOD was undertaking the monumental task of changing the culture regarding alcohol and drug use at ECU.
Professor Glascoff (Health and Human Performance) stated that the power point presentation emphasized the importance of handling alcohol poisoning, etc. quickly. She stated that she had not gotten from the information the fact that freshmen students should just not drink because they were all underage. Specifically, why the message is not stated as “Don’t drink”. Professor Jones remarked that about 15% of the students under the legal age of 21 class don’t engage in alcohol use; that means that 85% of the students are drinking illegally. Also both faculty and staff make efforts to attend as many student group meetings, etc. to reiterate no underage drinking.
J. Catherine Rigsby, Faculty Assembly Delegate
Professor Rigsby provided several reports for the Faculty Senators in reference to the October 2, 2009, UNC Faculty Assembly Meeting and links have been provided below:
Professor Rigsby stated that the highlights of the Faculty Assembly report related to President Bowle’s budget report in which he stated that 900 positions had been abolished. Six hundred of those positions were filled which means that 600 people lost their job. He also reported that he expects more budget cuts this year but that they will not impact the academic core. More vertical cuts were expected. The four year tuition plan will be reviewed along with the enrollment growth formula. A committee will be formed to look at distance education across the state leading to a director of distance education for the state. The watch words of nimble, efficient , and responsive were applied to the way that we will do business in the future. ECU’s procurement system was pointed out as an example of a program that was efficient and will be adopted by the system as well as UNC-Ch Ramses system for contracts and grants. Faculty workload be global effectiveness were mentioned as well as retreat rights for faculty who leave administrative positions. Retention and graduation rates will be important for distributing funding to the various universities. He defined administrators in part. Other presentations were given by a GA lawyer on employment based on funding availability. A safety briefing was included in the day’s briefing. Senior Vice President Alan Mabe discussed faculty workload study which he said is not a big issue with the legislature right now. Review boards were discussed for evaluating new programs. Peer institution reviews will also be held this year. The committees of the Faculty Assembly are also named and their missions are included; please contact a Faculty Assembly delegate or the Chair of Faculty for any issues you want discussed at the system wide level.
No questions were posed to Professor Rigsby.
K. Question Period
Professor Givens (Foreign Languages and Literatures) stated that in relation to the work of Provost Sheerer’s Task Force last year, keeping faculty at arms length from the main issues relating to student retention may prevent the University from maintaining retention rates and ensuring grading integrity. Provost Sheerer stated that what the Retention Task Force developed would need to be vetted and asked Professor Givens if he would like to be on task force. Provost Sheerer agreed that the findings of the task force should definitely be forwarded to one or more standing University academic committees for deliberation.
Professor Rigsby (Geology) asked why were the standing University academic committees not being used to address graduate and retention issues instead of continuing to form Task Forces to address academic issues. Provost Sheerer replied that she had tried to involve administrators working in enrollment management and student affairs first in order to give them an opportunity to lend a voice to these issues. She stated that she did not have any resistance to using the standing University academic committees but that other pieces needed to be pulled together.
Professor Sharer (English) stated that as a member of the Admission and Retention Policies Committee, she has just recently been asked to serve on the newly formed Retention Task Force. She read on her computer that she had been nominated while in the Senate meeting today.
Professor Abdel-Rahman (Medicine) asked about the standardization of grants and contacts within sponsored programs. VC Mageean stated that she would try to get a clarification on this because a lot of this was dictated by Federal rules and regulations and that she was unsure what the standardizations meant. She agreed to provide additional information to the Faculty Officers on the Ramses system for distribution.
Professor Kerbs (Criminal Justice) asked about the 133% funding cap and where was it in relation to discussion among members of a standing University academic committee. VC Horns responded that the 133% funding cap issue and that Professor Brenda Killingsworth serves as a faculty representative on this committee. An administrative EPA Personnel Policies Committee, chaired by Jim Mullen in Human Resources also exists and that Professor Marianna Walker as Chair of the Faculty, serves on this administrative committee representing faculty concerns.
Agenda Item IV. Unfinished Business
There was no unfinished business to come before the body at this time.
Agenda Item V. Report of Committees
A. Faculty Governance Committee, Puri
Professor Purification Martinez (Foreign Languages and Literatures),
Chair of the Committee, stated that since August 2009 she, along with various
members of the Faculty Governance Committee,
had been working on the final proposed revisions to Appendix D. She noted that she had received a phone call
that morning from the University Attorney, Donna Payne and was told that the
proposed revisions included in the Senate’s October meeting agenda were not yet
ready for final approval. Ms. Payne
stated that page 11 of the agenda did not address #8 of the General
Administration Letter, dated May 2009.
Professor Martinez noted that members of the committee had consulted
with both the University Attorney’s office by way of a representative in
attendance at all Faculty Governance Committee meetings and someone at General
Administration for additional information. However ,a reply was not
received. Therefore, in order to address
this concern, the Committee would meet soon to consider this and asked to have
this report removed from consideration today , so it would not be adopted
piecemeal, in hopes of introducing proposed
revisions addressing all these issues in the November
Professor Rigsby (Geology) stated that this was incredibly disturbing and asked that Chair Walker and Provost Sheerer meet to discuss this further. She noted that she wanted the Faculty Senators, Chancellor, and University Attorney to understand how hard the committees work on issues and that there were at least one University Attorney present in these meeting. She also noted that it had been 3 weeks since this issue was finalized within the Committee and that the administration and University Attorney’s office needed to work at the same rate that the committees were working in order to avoid butting heads.
Donna Payne, University Attorney stated that the point of contention was one that General Administration had pointed out earlier as a defect and involved the opportunity of a faculty member who has been denied tenure but had not lost his or her job. She stated that the General Administration Letter, dated May 2009 states that the faculty member would have the opportunity to grieve that action as called for in Section 607c of the UNC Code and through the Faculty Grievance Committee (Appendix Y of current ECU Faculty Manual). She stated that what was currently being proposed contradicted what General Administration required and there was a specific direction returned to the committee as denied. General Administration’s legal advisors indicated that the faculty member has the right to grieve, especially regarding early tenure decisions; General Administration’s opinion is that a faculty member’ s right to greave.
discussion, action on the proposed revisions to the ECU Faculty Manual, Appendix
D. Tenure and Promotion Policies and Procedures of ECU was postponed until
Standards Committee, Linda Wolfe
Professor Linda Wolfe (Anthropology), Chair of the Committee first presented a recommendation that Dance 1000 be reinstated as a Foundation Curriculum course for the Arts. She noted that a typographical error had occurred in the spring and that this course had been inadvertently left off the list of courses with Foundation credit. There was no discussion and the proposed reinstatement of Dance 1000 as a Foundation Curriculum course for the Arts was approved as presented. RESOLUTION #09-35
Professor Brown (Psychology), a member of both the Academic Standards Committee and SOIS Task Force (formed by IPAR) presented the Committee’s recommendation on the Student Opinion of Instruction Survey (SOIS). The Academic Standards Committee had made recommendations about the use of the SOIS last year which the Chancellor declined to approve Since that time a committee was appointed which met over the summer and examined the availability of commercially available surveys. This committee determined that the commercially available surveys were not significantly better than our SOIS instrument. A second committee named SOIS 2, began to consider how to modify what is currently used; this committee as well as the first committee made recommendations to the Academic Standards Committee and these recommendations are now before the Senators for consideration.
Professor Brown indicated that there are three problem areas including:
1) Over reliance on the use of Item 19 as the indication of teaching effectiveness.
2) Use by some unit administrators to use SOIS to rank order faculty in terms of teaching effectiveness in annual reviews. This is particularly difficult to justify when the standard deviations are not statistically significant.
3) Increasing the student response rate for the online SOIS.
The current proposal is to use the current SOIS online instrument with the removal of item 19. Secondly, the committee recommends that Provost’s office ensure that department heads and other unit administrators are trained on the use multiple means of evaluation of teaching effectiveness including the SOIS data. David Weismiller sent out a very informational memo to unit administrators on the topic of evaluating teaching effectiveness. Finally, the committee recommends that IPAR, who are the evaluation specialists, to use a number of methods to enhance the rate of student response. Professor Brown ended his remarks with what he called an editorial comment relative to the recommendations; this was to remove the word plasma in front of the word television since not all televisions on the University camps are plasma screen televisions.
Professor Roberts (Philosophy) asked about the committee’s insight into recommendation # 1 that read: “Administer the current SOIS instrument without Item 19.” Professor Brown stated this was the item that called the most contention. Item 19 is not an indicator of teaching effectiveness since it has no psychometric value. Given that some unit administrators line faculty up by the total score on the SOIS question 19; this question can mask the scores that would be generated only using the better question and that would be better overall evaluation.
Professor Zoller (Art and Design) stated that in reference to the University Auditor’s request Management Letter-University Policies Procedures and Training and the noted “lack of training for new supervisors and chairs of departments with regard to current University policy and procedures”, it seems that all unit administrators should be trained in different ways to evaluate faculty teaching.
Professor McKinnon (Interior Design and Merchandising) stated that in reference to recommendation 3 that read: “IPAR utilize a variety of methods to enhance the rate of student participation. This could include simplifying access to the instrument, such as adding a direct link from Blackboard courseware to the SOIS survey, utilizing campus TVs to increase awareness of completing the survey, and other appropriate means of encouraging students’ participation. He saw severe psychometric difficulties and that in some courses his evaluations did not get enough SOIS forms returned to be called data at all. If he were asked to publish his record of teaching effectiveness he could not use many of the SOIS scores as data because the return was so low it would not be considered statistically significant. If the SOIS information could not be published as a good statistical measurement then why are we discussing using it at all; why are there two standards for what reliable statistical data? Professor Brown indicated that this recommendation was an interim recommendation and there should not be an overreliance on the SOIS as a indication of teaching effectiveness.
Professor Zeager (Economics) stated that the unit personnel committees currently use a document that recommends to the unit chair using the Item 19 answer. If Item 19 were eliminated, the unit’s document would need to be changed, causing a hardship within the unit without time to do something different before the Spring evaluations including consideration of promotion and tenure. Professor Brown responded that Professor Zeager had a good point and that he was not qualified to speak to the detail related to the change over when Item 19 is eliminated
Professor Sharer (English) stated that it was not a bad recommendation to get rid of question Item19. She wondered when would this be implemented because all units would need training on how to look at the data collected from the SOIS materials and instead of only Item19 data. Professor Sharer expressed a logistical concern with implementing this change right now in some of the larger academic departments and suggested the change over be made in the fall of next year when there was more planning time. She asked how did Professor Brown and the Committee recommend handling the change. Professor Brown responded that he understood that the change was cumbersome but that more harm was being done by using Item 19 and that we just need to change the academic departments procedures since nothing was to be gained by continuing to do the same thing and use only evaluating faculty members by the use of Item 19.
Professor Howard (Communication) provided more overview of the SOIS task force and the correlation that the SOIS only depicted the student’s opinion of instruction and not the quality of the teaching conducted by the faculty member. Professor Brown indicated that both SOIS Committees 1 and 2 recommended to Academic Standards, that the current instrument be used without Item 19; and that the Academic Standards committee agreed and sponsored the resolution before the Senate now. That had been the vetting process up to now.
Kerbs (Criminal Justice) asked if there was a way to increase the response rate
by tying the completion of the SOIS with the student obtaining final grades
only after the survey was completed. Your final semester grades might be
accessed only upon completion of the survey or example. Professor Brown
responded that he felt that this should not be done since the survey needed to
continue to be voluntary, and he was concerned that whatever changes were made
to increase the response rate not victimize the faculty. He concluded that this
is a student issue so maybe the
Professor Rigsby (Geology) stated that she wanted to speak in favor of the change in the SOIS ECU should not penalize faculty and that changes to the way faculty are evaluated would be improved by the removal of Item 19. She also stated that with any changes in policies and procedures there are conflicts, but when General Administration imposes changes faculty rise to the occasion and handle the changes admirably. So this change in how we evaluate the quality of faculty teaching is much needed.
Professor Tovey (English) stated her support of what Professor Rigsby said and stated that when she hears from students and faculty that they are only using question Item19.
Professor Schmidt (Education) stated that she had a problem with tossing out a question just because people were misusing it. Doesn’t question Item19 provide us with information and can students identify good teaching? Professor Brown responded that there was a study completed that asked the question: “ Do students understand good teaching ? “and the answer was , “yes” , but that usually students do not like good teaching because it is generally harder than average or poor teaching. So, taking away question Item19 will help faculty because more items from the SOIS will be used in relation to providing feedback on teaching quality. Professor Brown stated that there were really only two questions being answered are: “ Is the professor nice and is the course well organized ? ”. He concluded that we are all addicted to Item 19.
Professor Jones (Allied Heath Sciences) asked if, from the comments of the group, was it the opinion of the faculty that the administrators were not trainable to use items on the SOIS other than question #19. Professor Brown did not respond.
Professor Zoller (Art and Design) called the question and the Academic Standards Committee’s recommendations on the Student Opinion of Instruction Survey (SOIS) were approved as presented. RESOLUTION #09-36
C. Admissions and Retention Policies Committee
Professor Joseph Thomas (Academic Library Services) and Professor Wendy Sharer (English), both members of the Committee, presented the proposed revisions to the ECU Faculty Manual, Part V. Section I.J. Grade Appeals. This recommendation was based on a model currently in use at UNC Charlotte and AAUP guidelines. The President of the SGA at the time ( who was a member of the Ad Hoc committee) stated that this resolution had been worded ,by the committee , and that he did not see a reason for a standing student member of the committee. Professor Thomas first noted a change in Item 5 of the appeals procedure (noted in red) so that it read:
“If step 4… This committee shall include four faculty members from the college: one selected by the instructor of record, one by the student appealing the grade, two by the college dean, and one faculty member from among the regular membership of the Student Academic Appellate Committee. The Committee shall elect its own chair. …”
Professor Brown (Psychology) moved to change the text under the appeals procedures #5 to read as follows “This committee shall include three faculty members from the college: one selected by the student, one selected by the instructor of record, and one appointed by the college dean. A majority shall prevail in the committee.” This amendment would reduce the perceived bias that more faculty there would reduce the potential bias against the student. The amendment was passed by a voice vote.
Brad Teasley (Student Government Association (SGA) Vice President) thanked the Ad Hoc committee for their work and stated that this year the student government would like to see would be a student member on the grade appeals committee and confirmed that the past SGA president did serve on the ad hoc committee that worded the resolution being presented. He stated that this is an important committee and that having a regular student member on the committee would increase the fairness of the appeal process. Tremayne Smith (SGA Treasurer) stated the addition of a student member would not usurp the professor’s ability to assign grades but it would properly appeal a grade that had been assigned through some form of malpractice. The addition of a student member would also make the students feel as if they had some sort of a voice in the grade appeals process. In K thru 12 education teacher are called teachers because they teach us, but somehow when a student reaches college the teacher is called a professor. He stated that he believed that this was because most college professors profess what they know. In professing, he stated, the faculty should not forget that students are more than just ears and that they are also voices in their own education.
Professor Gibson (Business) asked if the Committee was asking to add a student member since there was an amendment to decrease the membership from 4 to 3. She asked if the Committee wanted to ask that the SGA president or designee designate the 4th member. Mr. Teasley indicated that the student member should be the fifth member in their opinion.
The meeting adjourned at 5:25 p.m.
Hunt McKinnon Lori Lee
Secretary of the Faculty
Department of Interior Design and Merchandising
FACULTY SENATE RESOLUTIONS APPROVED AT THE OCTOBER 6, 2009, MEETING
09-35 Reinstatement of Dance 1000 as a Foundation Curriculum course for the Arts.
09-36 Recommendation on the Student Opinion of Instruction Survey (SOIS), as follows:
Any change in instrument or revision of the existing
student survey instrument will take time if it is to be done well. In the interim, the committee proposes that
the university continue with the current SOIS while the process is under review
but with the following recommendations:
1. Administer the current SOIS instrument without item 19.
2. The Provost’s Office should ensure that unit administrators receive training prior to the annual evaluation of faculty in the use of multiple methods of evaluating teaching effectiveness.
3. IPAR utilize a variety of methods to enhance the rate of student participation. This could include simplifying access to the instrument, such as adding a direct link from Blackboard courseware to the SOIS survey, utilizing campus TVs to increase awareness of completing the survey, and other appropriate means of encouraging students’ participation.